On 18th January we sent a questionnaire to general election candidates from all political parties asking the candidates to state their positions on a number of key issues related to wildlife protection, law enforcement and access to the countryside.
The questionnaire comprises eight questions and the respondents are required only to answer “yes” or “no” to each question, meaning that it takes only a few minutes to complete.
This is what we asked:
- Do you agree that Malta has an obligation to safeguard Europe’s breeding bird populations by protecting birds on their migration through the Maltese Islands?
- Do you agree that Malta should strictly follow and enforce the Birds Directive without the application of derogations to allow hunting in spring and trapping, two practices clearly banned by the same Birds Directive?
- Do you support the formation of a fully resourced wildlife crime unit to ensure that relevant nature protection laws, including those affecting bird hunting and trapping are properly enforced, and that violations of these laws are properly investigated to lead to prosecutions?
- “Public areas in the Maltese countryside belong to all Maltese people and should be safely accessible to everyone to use, enjoy and appreciate.” Do you agree with this statement?
- Do you agree that hunting and trapping should be banned in public nature parks like Xrobb l-G?a?in Nature Park and Majjistral Nature and History Park?
- Illegal structures and signs have covered and restricted access to much of the Maltese countryside for many years, uncontrolled. If you were elected to government, would you support MEPA’s enforcement unit to proactively remove such structures and signs from both public and private land during the government’s next mandate?
- Do you agree that ‘No-Hunting’ zones around residential areas should be increased along with penalties for those who violate these rules, to ensure improved safety for the Maltese public?
- Do you support the idea that both governing and opposition parties should join forces in order to thoroughly review and improve Malta’s current enforcement and judiciary systems dealing with hunting and trapping offences, as a commitment to improve the situation with regards to illegal hunting and trapping in Malta?
We have set a deadline of 1st February for the return of the completed questionnaire, after which the results will be made public on these pages.
Watch this space!